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Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Violence Policy Center: Firearms Industry and Gun Lobby are Targeting Your Children

Late last week the Violence Policy Center, one of the more radical gun ban lobby groups, released a report titled “Start Them Young” — How the Firearms Industry and Gun Lobby Are Targeting Your Children.  The report claims to show ongoing efforts by the firearms industry and pro-rights lobbyists to market guns to grade-school age children for “financial and political gain.”  And just how do firearm manufacturers do this?  Here as some of the ways sighted in the report:
  • Creating and marketing guns specifically to children, including the use of mascots like Crickett rifle’s “Davey Crickett;”
  • Promoting 22 caliber assault rifles with plastic incorporated into the design for “less recoil and lighter weight;”
  • Marketing guns in “child-friendly colors,” including pink, purple, orange, red, yellow and blue;
  • Encouraging parents to introduce firearms to their children “at the earliest possible age;”
  • Producing a number of “marketing research publications” that urge manufacturers and dealers to “target programs toward youth 12 years old and younger;”
  • And including children and teens in “3-Gun competitions,” where shooters “use three types of firearms on a timed circuit.”
Being the parent of two children who love to go shooting, I didn't need any help from the "industry" to get them interested in the sport.  Both of them started out with a Daisy Red Ryder and my oldest daughter progressed to hunting rifles.  When a friend gave me one of those "22 caliber assault rifles" as a Christmas present last year, my oldest daughter immediately gravitated to it, not because the "gun lobby" marketed it to her, but because she could adjust the stock to fit her perfectly and she could go through a box of ammo in little to no time.
 
Is the industry making products that can be used by youth?  Of course, they'ed be foolish not to.  But the fact that kids are taking up the sport of shooting probably has more to do with their parents choices, or possibly an organization like the YMCA that includes marksmanship in the local summer camp in the Richmond area, than any marketing ploy by manufacturers or the "gun lobby."

Hat tip to Guns.com.

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